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MegaUpload founder to remain in jail

The founder of one of the world’s largest file-sharing websites is to remain in jail until his bail request is heard in a few day’s time.

MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom, far right with three of his employees in a New Zealand court.
MegaUpload founder Kim Dotcom, far right with three of his employees in a New Zealand court.
Image: AP Photo/Greg Bowker, New Zealand Herald

THE FOUNDER OF one of the world’s largest file-sharing websites is to remain in jail until his bail request is heard on 25 January, a judge in New Zealand ruled today.

Three days ago, the the US Department of Justice and the FBI shut down MegaUpload.com and its subsidiary site MegaVideo. A US federal grand jury has accused several of the individuals and entities involved in the operation of a number of crimes, including conspiracy to commit racketeering, copyright infringement and money laundering, as well as criminal copyright infringement.

The site’s German founder Kim Dotcom, who legally changed his name from Schmitz, was arrested in New Zealand last Thursday, along with three of the site’s other operators.

According to the US indictment, Dotcom earned $42 million last year from MegaUpload’s sites – which had about 150 million users, 50 million daily hits and accounted for 4 per cent of internet traffic.

The company is based in Hong Kong but US prosecutors took action as some of the alleged pirated content was hosted on leased servers in Virginia.

Read: Less free TV as MegaUpload (and MegaVideo) shut down>

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